April 14, 2023

Langley lawyer Scott Thomas Johnston has been suspended for six weeks and ordered to pay $2,500 in costs after committing professional misconduct by sexually harassing two employees of his law firm.

In a joint submission to a Law Society Tribunal hearing panel, Johnston admitted that on June 20, 2020 he sexually harassed two female employees at an event hosted by their law firm. At the time, Johnston was the employer of both women and one of two partners at the law firm, which the panel found put him in a position of power.

In the first instance, Johnston admitted that he made comments and gestures of a sexual nature, engaged in unwelcome sexual advances and touched the female employee without her consent.

In the second instance, he became inappropriately close to another female employee against her wishes, and later made an unwelcome comment and gesture of a sexual nature.

The hearing panel found that Johnston’s conduct detrimentally affected both women, one of whom left the law firm approximately four months after the event. In accepting the joint submission, the hearing panel noted Johnston’s acceptance of responsibility and expression of remorse, along with his alcohol dependency and the remedial steps he has taken to manage it.

The full decision can be read here.